It has been our enormous privilege to see what many consider among the world’s most beautiful places. It is a privilege, but not necessarily one stemming from income, to see these sites, as Americans have, in our parks and public lands, a bounty inexpensive to visit, if far from free. No doubt there are spots on the planet not in the United States vying for the title of the most beautiful place on Earth, but it isn’t just jingoism to believe that some of the strongest competitors for that title exist here, and are, for now at least, accessible to all.
We once believed that Grand Teton National Park was the most beautiful place we’d ever seen, until we saw the Grand Canyon. But we have always wanted to visit Kauai, and in particular, the Na Pali Coast, wondering if, when the votes came in, it would take the contest. We’ve spent the past five nights on the island, and as we leave we think we have photographic evidence in support of its candidacy. Herewith, some pictures to back up the claim, all taken with the Leica SL, from above (by helicopter), at ground level (hiking), and by sea (boat.)